HBO to film Sarah Palin movie in Maryland
HBO announced plans Friday to film an account of the 2008 presidential campaign of John McCain in Maryland.
Game Change, based on the bestselling book of the same name by journalists John Heilemann and Mark Halperin, focuses on the campaign from McCain’s selection of then-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin to their general election defeat to Barack Obama and Joe Biden.
Palin will be played by Julianne Moore, the Academy Award-nominated actress who has starred in such films as The End of the Affair, The Hours, Far From Heaven and, most recently, The Kids Are Alright.
Palin, who was memorably skewered by Tina Fey on Saturday Night Live, was asked this week about HBO's casting choice.
"Well, I'm all about job creation," she told Fox News' Sean Hannity. "And I guess I could provide some of these gals who pretend like they are me some job security. I would ask, though, if they're of the mind of spreading the wealth around, that perhaps they want to spring for one of my kids' sets of braces or something as they capitalize on pretending to be me."
Hannity had a few ideas of his own for the role.
"She doesn't really look -- I mean, she's a good actress. I thought Courtney Cox, Demi Moore, might be a little bit more -- a little closer look, no?"
"Well, I'm absolutely flattered that you would say that," Palin responded. "But, no, I don't know. I think I'll just grit my teeth and bear whatever comes what may with that movie."
The made-for-television movie is to be directed and executive produced by Jay Roach and written and co-executive produced by Danny Strong, whose worked together on Recount, HBO’s Emmy Award-winning account of the 2000 presidential campaign between George W. Bush and Al Gore.
Gov. Martin O'Malley said the production is estimated to create jobs for approximately 160 local crew and 1,800 local actors and extras.
“HBO produces the highest quality and most-acclaimed films and series on television,” O'Malley said in a statement. “The talent involved in Game Change once again proves their commitment to entertainment excellence. We are very pleased to welcome HBO back.”
“We’ve had great experiences filming in Maryland,” HBO Films president Len Amato said. “The state offers a strong local base of talented crew and actors, and we are very grateful for the generous cooperation of the Governor and the Film Office.”
As Sun television critic David Zurawik points out, the annoncement is more good news for the local production community, following filming in Baltimore for the Julia Louis-Dreyfus political satire Veep.